Skip to Content

Graduate School

Graduate School

Graduate education at DSU provides innovative programs that prepare tomorrow’s leaders in a growing number of fields.  With “active learning. active life.” as our motto, students engage in highly interactive environments for advanced study with talented faculty through transformative experiences, internships, and research opportunities. Graduates sharpen their expertise to meet high expectations in competitive career markets.

Our graduate degrees are advanced programs of study focused on a particular academic discipline or profession.  An academic master’s degree will prepare you for career advancement or for even more advanced study at the doctoral level, while a professional master’s degree is centered on expanding your skills and knowledge for a specific profession.

Compared to undergraduate studies, graduate school is more focused on you as a growing scholar and/or professional in a given field, and the expectations regarding the quality and quantity of your performance are greater.  In graduate school you can expect:

  • Focused studies in a specific discipline with fewer if any elective choices
  • Rigorous evaluation of your work by professors and peers
  • More rigorous checkpoints such as qualifying exams and an overall GPA of 3.0 or higher
  • Smaller classes with much student interaction and individual attention
  • Work experience through internships, teaching, and/or research
  • Production of original research is often required

Types of Master’s Programs at DSU

We offer three types of master’s degrees--Master of Arts, Master of Science, or a professional master’s degree in a specific discipline such as Master of Accountancy or Master of Marriage and Family Therapy. 

A Master of Arts degree is typically found in the humanities and social science disciplines and can often include a thesis, which is a work of original scholarship written under the direction of a faculty advisor.  There is no foreign language requirement for master’s degrees at DSU.

A Master of Science is typically a program for scientific and quantitative disciplines.  A Master of Science degree can be fairly general or highly specialized.  Some are more focused on students producing original research, while others focus more on delivering in-depth instruction.

A professional master’s degree such as our Master of Athletic Training prepares you for a career in that field.  These programs are most likely to have rigorous learning outcomes stipulated by external accreditors and licensing boards and may include nationalized exams that must be passed in order to receive specific credentials. 

What is the graduate campus culture at DSU?

Your social life will be much different than it was as an undergraduate.  Your social circle on campus will largely consist of other students and faculty members in your department.  There is often a close bonding that develops among students and faculty who are deeply immersed in similar academic goals.  The same students will be in most of your classes and you will come to know your professors more deeply than previously experienced.  You will become a master at reading new material and gathering information, which you will then use in individual or group projects or by publicly presenting your ideas.  Attending graduate school will require you to have the ability to set priorities.  It requires a great deal of self-discipline to maneuver among the competing demands for your time so that you consistently make progress toward degree completion. 

What are the rewards for completing a graduate degree?

In published research regarding the benefits of a graduate degree are the expected outcomes like career advancement, career flexibility, recognition and credibility, and financial reward. However, the greatest reward of all might just be that you tested yourself against a set of very high and rigorous expectations and emerged triumphant.